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Balaalo Eviction: Non-compliant Balaalo move cattle to neighbouring districts

FLASH BACK: Some of the cattle on a truck after UPDF commenced a forceful eviction of balaalo herdsmen in Nwoya in March 2018.

Gulu, (UG): Several non-compliant cattle owners in northern Uganda are relocating their animals to neighbouring districts to evade eviction.

The eviction is in line with Executive Order No. 3 of 2023 issued by President Yoweri that migrant cattle leave Northern Uganda for being indisciplined and leaving their animals to destroy crops.

Phase one of the eviction exercise, which began on November 25th targets cattle owners keeping animals on unfenced land, without a water source, or on government lands such as Lakang, Maruzi, and Aswa ranches and Got Apwoyo Game Reserve.

However, the State Minister for Northern Uganda Grace Freedom Kwiyocwiny said the eviction task force has learned that some cattle owners in Gulu, relocate their animals to Lamwo during the day and return at night to dodge eviction. While in Otuke district in Lango sub-region, cattle owners are reportedly relocating their animals to Kween district.

She added that in some cases the non-compliant cattle owners pretend that they are leaving but take only a few animals and connive with locals to remain with the bigger number. “But the bottom line is, if there is no fence, four strands of barbed wire, and no water, we shall evict, “she said.

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Kwiyocwiny noted that the eviction implementation committee had agreed that animals identified as belonging to non-compliant owners leave in three days, but that deadline is not being adhered to.

She revealed that the delay will be corrected because two days ago, President Museveni directed that abandoned cattle should auctioned and the proceeds remitted to the government consolidated funds.

In November, the minister of state for northern Uganda, Grace Freedom Kwiyocwiny, revealed that there are more than 80,000 heads of cattle in northern Uganda belonging to non-compliant cattle owners.

However, Kwiyocwiny said only 4,692 of these have been driven out within three weeks from Nwoya, Pader, Lamwo, Apac, Gulu, and Amuru districts.

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Some of the animals are said to have been taken to Nakasongola, Kyankwanzi, Hoima, and others have been taken to the abattoirs in Kampala.



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